Statistics don’t lie:  the opioid crisis in Arizona is increasing rapidly, and officials are working hard to find a solution. The Arizona Department of Health Services is calling it a crisis in with good reason:  On June 1, 2017, the Arizona Department of Health Services released its latest data on opioid overdoses in Arizona showing the highest number of deaths in ten years. In 2016, 790 Arizonans died from opioid overdoses. The trend shows a startling increase of 74 percent over the past four years. The fact that Arizona’s opioid numbers are increasing at an alarming rate should be a concern to every Arizonan.

The statistics

While you can download the entire opioid report from the ADHS website, here are some of the statistics revealed:

  • The number of reported 2016 deaths directly attributed to opioids among Arizona residents, or nonresidents
    within Arizona, is 790.
  • There is a 16.3% increase in opioid deaths since 2015, and a 74% increase since 2012.
  • Sixty-four percent of the growth in opioid deaths over the last four years, and nearly 54% in the last two years have been heroin deaths.
  • Heroin has increased from 11% of opioid deaths in 2007 to 39% in 2016.
  • If current trends are sustained, by 2019 the number of annual opioid deaths in Arizona will exceed 1,000, of which nearly 50% will be due to heroin.

It’s becoming so alarming and growing so fast that the ADHS website now shows real-time statistics on deaths, overdoses and more. It’s fascinating and very sad.

SRC opioid crisis statisticsThe opioid epidemic has prompted a state and national public-health response with measures to raise awareness about the dangers of over-prescribing pain pills and to make the overdose-rescue medication naloxone more widely available. In 2015, the most recent numbers by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, shows more than 52,000 Americans died of drug overdoses.

The phenomenon has become so prevalent that the news of the opioid crisis has been dominating the Arizona news media lately. reported that fifteen opioid-suspected deaths were recorded in one week in Arizona. Those deaths were among the 191 opioid overdose cases overall recorded from June 15th-22nd. reported that the state is averaging two deaths of day from opioid overdose. They went on to report that there are more actual deaths from prescription opioids and that the death rate from opioid abuse and overdose is higher among those in the 45- to 54-year-old age group.

Why are opioids so addictive?

It is estimated that between 26.4 million and 36 million people abuse opioids worldwide, with an estimated 2.1 million people in the United States suffering from substance use disorders related to prescription opioid pain relievers in 2012 and an estimated 467,000 addicted to heroin. How does this happen? It’s much easier to get addicted than you think. Long-term opioid use changes the way nerve cells work in the brain. This happens even to people who take opioids for a long time to treat pain, as prescribed by their doctor. The nerve cells grow used to having opioids around, so that when they are taken away suddenly, the person can have lots of unpleasant feelings and reactions. These are known as withdrawal symptoms. People who seek help and treatment for pain from a trusted medical professional often unknowingly become addicted to those medications. It’s a sad story repeated over and over again. One drug treatment center in Scottsdale , besides Scottsdale Recovery Center that offers an opioid specific rehab program is Arizona Recovery located in Scottsdale, AZ. Experienced and passionate drug and alcohol rehab in Arizona.

What can you do if you become addicted?

A range of treatments exist for heroin addiction, including medications and behavioral therapies. Treatment often begins with medically assisted detoxification, to help patients withdraw from the drug safely. Medications such as clonidine and, now, buprenorphine can be used to help minimize symptoms of withdrawal. The best way to help not only overcome the addiction but to stay sober is to work with a professional addiction center that has several treatment options, including inpatient treatment and intensive outpatient treatment. Understanding how addiction opioids are, and how easy it can be to get addicted, it’s important to understand that addiction is not something to be ashamed of, and getting treatment is crucial to overcoming addiction.

If you’re struggling with addiction, contact Scottsdale Recovery Center now to get the help you need. For over a decade, Scottsdale Recovery Center has offered an acclaimed recovery environment that merges upscale and luxury accommodations with affordability, clinical expertise and an unwavering commitment to patient care and aftercare, providing “The Gold Standard in Care” with the Joint Commission Accreditation. Call 888-NODRUGS or visit the website as


Talk to Someone Who’s Been There. Talk to Someone Who Can Help. Scottsdale Recovery Center holds the highest accreditation (Joint Commission) and is Arizona’s premier rehab facility since 2007. Call 602-346-9142.

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